Town-wide water outage closes Farmville restaurants, cafes: ‘We’re just hoping for the best’

Local News

FARMVILLE, Va. (WRIC) — A water line break has left the town of Farmville without clean running water.

As of Tuesday evening, water had been restored. However, it’s still not safe to drink without boiling it first, according to town officials.

Longtime Farmville residents tell 8News it’s the first time in recent memory something like this has happened in the college town. Those same residents are wondering when it will all be over.

“Me and my wife had to go to Walmart and spend about $130, $140 on water,” one man told 8News.

Farmville manager Scott Davis said it’s unknown what caused the water line break. Davis said the break first caused a town-wide outage early this week. The water was restored but a precautionary boil water notice was issued Monday and into at least Wednesday.

A Monday update posted on the Farmville government’s website says the process of making the repairs will be slow and take days to complete. Some residents will have water coming into their homes, but the town is asking people to conserve and follow the boil advisory.

A drive-through water distribution station was opened at the Prince Edward-Farmville Youth Association Gymnasium on Monday evening for residents to get bottled drinking water.

Many of the town’s cafes and restaurants coming out of the pandemic will have to close until water is safe to use.

“I just feel sorry for the people not being able to open their businesses,” said Jane Crews, a local resident.

That’s the case at Tony Perini’s pizza restaurant.

“We’re just hoping for the best,” Tony Perini told 8News Tuesday. “I just assumed everything would be okay today and I came down to do all of my prep work and was told we couldn’t use the water unless we boiled it first. Well, you can’t boil water and put it through a fountain drink machine.”

The owner is optimistic that he can re-open Wednesday. A sign sits on his door alerting customers that he’s closed Tuesday but will open at 11 a.m. the next day.

Similar signs are posted on other businesses, like Uptown Coffee Cafe and North Street Press club.

“[It] could have a little effect on my checkbook at the end of the week if we don’t get some people coming in and spending some money,” Perini said, “but hopefully it won’t be any more than just today.”

On Tuesday afternoon, Town Manager Scott Davis said officials were running tests on the water quality. He said they are waiting on those results and will have an update Wednesday morning at 10 am. He said this may all be resolved at that point.

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